Taking a chill pill by watching a movie with a sugary drink right next to you might sound like the perfect Saturday evening for many of us. But a new study done by the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health and other institutions comes to ruin that good vibe. It’s telling us that enjoying sweet drinks like soda every day might make us have a higher risk of developing liver cancer, according to Insider.
Liver cancer affects more men than women, and it’s a very dangerous type of cancer. One of the reasons is that it manifests through very few symptoms in its early stages. Otherwise, liver cancer is often treatable.
Added sugar can lead to stress on the liver
The explanation of the new study can be summarized like this: the added sugar that’s present in the sweet beverages can mess with blood sugar and insulin levels, which would affect the liver. Even drinking a single sugary beverage per day can make you at higher risk of developing liver cancer, according to the research.
Longgang Zhao, who is the lead author of the new study and also a doctoral candidate at the University of South Carolina, stated as Insider quotes:
Replacing sugar-sweetened beverages with water, and non-sugar-sweetened coffee or tea could significantly lower liver cancer risk.
For the new research, the scientists analyzed data from over 90,000 women aged 50 to 79 and for about 19 years of follow-up.
The conclusion was terrifying: women who consume one sugary drink per day have a 73% higher chances of dealing with liver cancer compared to those who have a maximum of three sweet drinks for a whole month.
In the end, it’s important to remember that the new study doesn’t show that sugary drinks will cause cancer. It just shows a possible link, and more research is needed to understand it.
The new research was presented at the American Society for Nutrition, NUTRITION 2022 LIVE ONLINE.